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Shukami

  • Romania
  • Joined Aug 18, 2021
  • 19 / F

Planetes

Dec 3, 2021

Planetes best falls into the genre of hard sci-fi; it deals with events and technologies of the future, yet does not introduce impossible/ridiculous technologies. Although 2075 may seem a bit early, the most absurd aspect of the future actually introduced by Planetes seems to be a fully functioning moon colony and the process of sustainable cold fusion. Even minor aspects of space life such as the loss of movement control in microgravity or the effects of living at 1/6gs on the moon is covered in the anime.

Yet the collection of debris is really just a tool to introduce greater concepts and develop characters. One of the great questions posed by the Planetes asks is "why do we need to develop space at all?" Some characters will give simple, optimistic answers, ranging from the collection of Helium-3 as an energy source to simply because it's there. Planetes manages to engage the viewer in not only answering the question as it applies to their fictional world but as it applies to our own, war-torn society.

However, civil wars still rage through 3rd world countries and the wealthy nations seem to do little to alleviate their suffering. A fictional terrorist group called the Space Defense Front seems hell bent to refocus attention on these poor, suffering nations. Unlike many antagonists in anime, the terrorists are not presented as a clearly evil group. Rather, the viewer must decide for himself whether or not their means justify their ultimate goal to end the suffering of underdeveloped nations.

The artwork is also very well done. There's no heavy stylization on people, yet their faces remain expressive and small details such as facial injuries are not ignored. The real pull of the art is in the depiction of various spacecraft, the moon colony, earth as viewed from space, the spacesuits, etc., where no detail is spared in their outstanding (and realistic) depiction.

As a final note, I'd like to mention that this anime is very "real". Not just the technology, but the way characters act, their ambitions, their actions, their relations. Although there are moments where actions seem to be irrational, there is always some amount of justification given. Never did I personally feel that "something like this could never happen" or "there's no way a person could/would do that in real life".

9/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall

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Dubfan Dec 3, 2021

Fantastic review for a fantasic anime!